If you’ve been injured in an accident — whether a car wreck, slip and fall, or work accident — you probably have a lot of questions. The aftermath of a personal injury accident can feel overwhelming. In addition to your physical pain and emotional suffering, you’re quickly burdened with medical bills, paperwork and phone calls from insurance providers and law enforcement. If you’re worried about what you need to do after your accident, we’re here to help. Keep reading as we cover what you’ll need to know about personal injury settlements.
Do I Need a Personal Injury Lawyer?
Not all personal injury accidents require the help of a lawyer. If the resulting injuries are relatively minor — and cleared by a doctor — you probably won’t need a lawyer. However, for more serious injuries, including broken bones or a hospital stay, or if your long-term health was affected, seeking legal counsel is your best option.
That’s because victims of serious injuries usually face tens of thousands of dollars in medical expenses and require long-term medical care. They may even be unable to return to work. Personal injury attorneys understand the physical, financial and psychological hardships associated with severe injuries. They manage each step of the case, drawing on specialized legal expertise and experience to negotiate the compensation you deserve — which is especially important when dealing with insurance companies who routinely refuse to settle in good faith. Working with a personal injury attorney also releases you from the burden of proving your case so that you have the peace of mind to focus on your recovery.
How Long Do Settlements Take?
No two personal injury cases are the same, and the length of yours will depend on its complexity. Most personal injury cases are settled out of court, either through negotiations with an insurance provider representative or through a mediation process.
It’s common for victims who feel anxious about the sudden mountain of medical bills and their inability to work to feel pressured to take the first offer from an insurance provider. However, insurance companies are known for offering settlements that are far below what a victim actually needs and deserves. Before you accept an initial settlement offer, it’s in your best interest to discuss your case with a lawyer who is experienced in dealing with these tactics.
That said, most cases are resolved without any formal litigation. In this type of situation, your attorney will work directly with the other party or the insurance company to get the case fairly settled within a matter of weeks or months. However, for cases that go to trial, it may be a year or more before fair compensation can be reached.
How Much Compensation Will I Get?
Because no two cases are exactly alike, it’s difficult to generalize this. While some victims may fully recover, others may be left with a lifetime of physical and mental impairments, which means an entirely different level of financial expense and suffering. It also depends upon the defendant’s insurance policy, since providers won’t offer settlements over the policy limits. As a result, calculating the damages for an injury settlement can be complicated and will depend upon the following:
- The severity of your injury
- Duration and invasiveness of treatment
- Long-term treatment needs
- Potential of short and long-term pain and suffering
- Potential lost earnings in the future
- How injuries affect a victim’s ability to enjoy life as he or she did before the accident
However, if you or a loved one has experienced severe injury and are considering legal action, you deserve to know what you might stand to recover. When you partner with an experienced personal injury law firm, you’re in the best position to receive the maximum amount of compensation. At Janet, Janet & Suggs, we have a proven track record of recovering millions on behalf of personal injury victims, including:
- $16 million verdict for a head-on commercial vehicle accident
- $9 million for an 18-wheeler crash
- $2.5 million for a tractor-trailer collision
A Personal Injury Law Firm That Has Your Back
Here at JJS, we care about our clients and their cases. Our nationally recognized attorneys take the time to get to know our clients, providing one-on-one legal counsel each step of the way. Our highest priority is to fight for the recovery you and your family deserve, which is why we don’t charge for an initial meeting to discuss your case. Contact our personal injury law office today for a free, no-obligation consultation — and let us help you decide the next best steps to take.